Don’t Bum Out the Musicians
Ah, behold, how hot tears
Roll down pale cheeks
Johann Sebastian Bach
Ascension Oratorio, Cantata No. 11
At St. Paul’s church, the musicians have heard it all.
For years, they have paused between Bach movements to hear the strange reed of a human voice recite grief.
Watch out, the poetry director gently warns me.
This church across the street from where the towers fell
is busy with Spring.
What shall I wring from my throat?
Won’t the tenor later sing
Ah, just stay, my dearest life
What has been whispered, wailed before
My arrival? Gone, I figure,
Worse than gone.
When the tower fell, just before the tower fell,
The lives, trapped between the flames
And the window.
Your farewell and your early departure
For J. Chester Johnson